The benefits of exercise are numerous and they go far beyond simply building muscles and losing weight. Working out regularly will also reverse aging, help your immune system, positively affect your brain and self-esteem; however working out is only part of the whole picture. To fully gain all the benefits of exercise you have to recover properly from your workouts.
The three major things you can do to recover from a strenuous workout is eat, hydrate (with water) and sleep but once you take care of those major things there are a few things you can do in addition to help the recovery process along. I am a huge fan of stretching before and after workouts to loosen up the body and restore it from the impact of bodily stress due to exercise. Recently my husband has become hooked to self-myofascial release (SMR) with foam rolling. From his personal experience, he LOVES it. I’m still working on the love.
My husband has been using Gaiam’s 36” Foam Roller almost everyday and he couldn’t be anymore impressed, in fact not only does he foam roll on non-workout days but he often foam roll in-between exercises during his workouts. During the past three weeks since performing self-myofascial release with foam rolling, he mentioned feeling a significant increase in the loosening of his body. For example, warming up his muscles in preparation for physical activity, deep massaging effects (specifically sore muscle groups) and the feeling of restoration throughout his body after physical activity. For myself, I have been learning to enjoy the feeling. I find it hurts at first, then it feels good.
Personally, I have been working on my back and core strength. It took a year for my abdominal separation to heal from my second pregnancy and now that I have the okay from my doctor to strengthen my core – I’m SO ready! Gaiam’s Restore Strong Core & Back Kit has been really helpful in aiding me to do the strengthening exercises. The kit includes an Anti-Burst CoreFit Ab Ball, Strong Core and Back Workout DVD, and BONUS downloadable Back Pain Relief workout. The workout videos are easy to follow and gentle enough for beginner’s, yet still challenging. The CoreFit ball helps me do the ab work, without straining my back.
Become stronger and more flexible with the #1 recommended post-physical therapy tool: resistance bands. Increase shoulder flexibility and range of motion, strengthen upper back muscles, improve posture, and condition core muscles with our all-in-one resistance band kit. The Strength & Flexibility Kit will add variety and challenge to your workout with three different resistance levels and our detailed exercise guide.
Along with the core & back kit, I have been using Gaiam’s Resistance Bands.
Using the resistance bands engages my core and elongates the back muscles. Basically, it’s a great way to stretch and to increase flexibility. I love incorporating them to my mat workouts.
Gaiam offers an entire line of fitness tools dedicated to restorative fitness, to help you recover from the physical stresses your body experiences everyday – so your body is as young as you feel!
I encourage you to add restorative fitness to your healthy lifestyle and give foam rolling a try – and let us know what you think!
As always, please comment with any questions or recommendations, we love hearing from you. Thanks for reading and cheers to your good health!
[disclaim]Before starting any new diet and exercise program please check with your doctor and clear any exercise and/or diet changes with them before beginning. I am not a doctor or registered dietitian and do not claim to be so.The opinions and experiences I share are my own.[/disclaim]
[line] This post is made possible by GAIAM Canada. All opinions are my own.